It’s a bird… It’s a plane…
No, this isn’t an introduction to a Hollywood flick, but a usual scene in many dining rooms of families with young picky eaters.
Meal times should be relaxing times for families to enjoy healthy, delicious food. With picky eaters, however, breakfast, lunch, and dinner can be stressful. As they push their vegetables to the edge of their plates, you try to whack your brains for more ways to get your kids to eat their food. There are only two endings to this scene. Your child cries or you accept defeat and just try to get them to eat vegetables another day.
It doesn’t always have to be this way, you know. You can put an end to this cycle!
Here are seven ways to get your kids to eat veggies:
1. Incorporate Veggies with their Favorite Food
Although some kids may not like the idea of messing with their favorite dish, many will be willing to experiment. If your kids love hamburgers, try adding a piece of lettuce or tomato and see how they’ll take it. You can also try sneaking some finely chopped broccoli flower and spinach into lasagna. With the broccoli mixed in with the ground beef and the spinach layered in with the cheese, they will enjoy the same textures they have come to love in lasagna.
2. Take them out to a Healthy Restaurant
A change of setting may encourage your kids to try other dishes. They may also be inspired to eat vegetables when they see people from the other tables doing it, too.
3. Use Your Imagination
photo credit: SuperHealthyKids
Make vegetables look like fun and friendly items on their plates. Cut veggies into different shapes and things. Turn a broccoli into a poodle or a cauliflower into a sheep. Make mealtimes storytimes using your cutout vegetable characters.
4. Let them Help You Prepare Their Meals
Many kids will be willing to taste something they’ve made by themselves. Take your children shopping for vegetables and make them help you prepare their food. Let them wash, peel, and flavor their veggies.
5. Give Kids Time to Be Familiar With Their Veggies
Introduce one kind of vegetable at a time. Avoid giving them a plate filled with unfamiliar things. If you were able to get your children to eat carrots today, let them enjoy carrots for a week before adding another type of vegetable into their meal.
6. Let Them Try Vegetable Juice
Sometimes kids already have a preconceived apprehension to veggies because they think anything that’s healthy and good for you cannot be delicious. Introduce them to fruit and vegetable juices and they’ll see veggies as a treat! Organic vegetables yield naturally sweet juices. You’ll be surprised to find your kid drinking up broccoli, moringa, spinach and much much more!
7. Be a Good Example
Kids learn by example. You can’t expect them to eat vegetables when they don’t see you doing it. Make sure to eat veggies and let your children know how much fun you’re having.
Helping children who are picky eaters take vegetables should be a family effort. It doesn’t just rest on the shoulders of the parents. If you have older kids, encourage them to help their brothers and sisters, too. When children are comfortable and having fun, they won’t feel as if they’re being forced to do something they don’t want to do.
Are you ready to turn your mealtimes around? Get in touch with Detoxify Bar to learn more about our healthy food options for the family.